Certain Payment Options Provide a Lifetime Benefit for a Loved One

When you apply for a NYSLRS pension, you’ll be asked to pick a pension payment option. All payment options will provide you with a monthly benefit for the rest of your life. With the Single Life Allowance, all payments stop at your death and nothing is paid to a beneficiary.

Infographic describing pension payment options

Providing for a Beneficiary

If you’re married and need to provide for your spouse, or if you have someone else you would like to provide a lifetime pension for after you’re gone, there are payment options that let you do that. In exchange for a reduction in your monthly payment, Joint Allowance options allow a beneficiary to collect all or part of your pension after you die. The amount of the reduction in your pension is based on your life expectancy and the life expectancy of your beneficiary. That means the younger your beneficiary, the deeper the reduction.

You can only choose one beneficiary under a Joint Allowance option, and your beneficiary selection cannot be changed after you retire, regardless of the circumstances. The benefit reduction for Joint Allowance options will continue even if your beneficiary dies before you do.

Pop-Up Payment Options

If we could predict the future, pension choices would be a lot easier. But a Pop-Up payment option is one way to hedge your bets. Like Joint Allowance options, these plans allow you to provide a lifetime payment for a beneficiary after your death. But if your beneficiary dies before you, your future monthly payments would be increased to the amount you would have been receiving had you chosen the Single Life Allowance. (The pop-up only affects future payments. You would not be entitled to any retroactive payments.)

The monthly reduction in your benefit will be greater if you choose a Pop-Up option over a regular Joint Allowance.

Find Out More

There are also options that allow you to leave a monthly payment to more than one beneficiary, and options that leave a benefit for a certain amount of time. Visit our Payment Option Descriptions page for details about all of the available payment options.

For a better idea of how these payments options would work out for you and your beneficiary, you can use our online pension projection calculator. It uses the information you enter to show how much you could expect to receive under each option. Most members who are within five years of retirement eligibility can also request a benefit projection by contacting our Call Center at 1-866-805-0990 (press 2 for members, follow the prompts, then press 5 to request a benefit projection), or you can submit a Request for Estimate form (RS6030).

6 thoughts on “Certain Payment Options Provide a Lifetime Benefit for a Loved One

  1. Fritz Laguerre

    if I have the single allowance before 10years and I get married can I add my wife ,aso if I have kids coming

    Reply
    1. NYSLRS Post author

      Unfortunately, once you choose a retirement option, you have only 30 days after the end of your retirement month to change your option.

      Reply
    1. NYSLRS Post author

      If you are not yet retired, most NYSLRS members are allowed to take a loan from NYSLRS. Visit our Loans page for more information.

      If you are talking about taking a lump sum payment at retirement, certain members are allowed to receive a partial lump sum (PLS) payment at retirement in exchange for a reduced monthly benefit.

      If you are a Police and Fire Retirement System (PFRS) member covered by a plan that allows for retirement after 20 or 25 years of service regardless of age, you may be eligible for a PLS. Employees’ Retirement System (ERS) members must be employed as a sheriff, undersheriff, deputy sheriff or county correction officer and work for an employer that has chosen the PLS option.

      You can find more information about the Partial Lump Sum (PLS) Payment option on our website.

      Reply

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